Deep neck abscesses secondary to methylphenidate (Ritalin) abuse
Head & Neck Surgery
J Zemplenyi, M F Colman
Methylphenidate (Ritalin) abuse has been and continues to be a major medical and social problem. In the past 6 months, we have seen five deep neck abscesses secondary to intravenous Ritalin abuse. This constitutes more than 50% of the deep neck abscesses seen by us in the same time period. The pathogenesis is related to an inflammatory foreign-body reaction to the fillers in the methylphenidate tablets, followed by superinfection by oral or cutaneous flora. Mixed flora infections with weakly pathogenic organisms may also occur.
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